Equitability and Inclusion Report 2020

Download the Equitability and Inclusion Report 2020



Why this report is important to us

We are proud to release our third Equitability and Inclusion Report, as we continue our deliberate equitability and inclusion journey. This report provides an update on our efforts, where we are today, and our plans for 2021. We hope to bring our people, our customers, and our partners into the conversation about the importance of an equitable and inclusive workplace, with a mix of data and commentary.

Where we are today

In 2020, the world was shaken by the pandemic, social unrest, and economic uncertainty. While many of us in the legal sector navigated the complexities of remote work, financial stress, business and school closings, and childcare issues, it became clear that some people were hit harder than others.¹ Global social and economic unrest can result in fear and prejudice, which chips away at progress made in promoting diversity, equitability, and inclusion. 2020 has called upon us at Elevate to lean in further on creating an equitable and inclusive environment in which our employees can thrive.

Elevate met some of the challenges in 2020 by building on our existing strengths and developing new ways to support our team members. Our Equitability and Inclusion (‘Synergy’) and our Workplace of the Future programs joined forces to help our people adapt to the current environment. Before COVID-19, 25% of our employees already worked remotely. When the pandemic hit, we were able to swiftly transition all employees to remote working. We provided the support and strengthened the infrastructure needed for them to adapt effectively. Rather than reduce our workforce in response to the sharp economic downturn in Q2, we decided to weather the storm as one global Elevate community, which we achieved by everyone agreeing to share the pain of reduced compensation.  We want to take this moment to thank everyone.

We enhanced our inclusion and engagement programming to create opportunities for people to feel connected and supported. We instituted initiatives to virtually gather people together, encouraging our managers and team members to engage with each other on a personal level. Our leadership team connected and communicated frequently with people throughout the organization. These efforts helped our people adapt to the climate of uncertainty while we continued to support our equitability and inclusion goals. We believe that our efforts were well received, as over 70% of people at Elevate reported they feel included during our most recent internal employee engagement survey.

Why equitability and inclusion are critical to our success

As The Law Company changing the legal business landscape, the benefits of a diverse, inclusive, and equitable work culture are at the heart of our business. We understand that people are our most valuable asset and prioritize hiring, promoting, and retaining the best diverse talent in the marketplace, despite the disruption of global events and cyclical shifts. Allowing  our team members to bring their whole selves to work, with diverse experiences and perspectives, drives innovation, and is simply good business. Research overwhelmingly indicates that diverse teams correlate with better business performance. Inclusion provides an environment that offers everyone an opportunity to thrive. Genuine respect for one another builds a foundation of trust that we and our customers can rely upon. This culture is rooted in our core values:

  • We Care: Our work is a positive influence on our personal lives and the lives of our families.
  • We Innovate: We celebrate creativity. We challenge the status quo and continuously ask of ourselves and each other, “How can we improve?”
  • We Deliver: We are careful about the commitments we make to our customers and to each other. We do what we say we will.

Our continuing journey

Synergy, our equitability and inclusion program, founded in 2017, has evolved and flourished over the last three years. We experienced the highest growth in volunteers in 2020. Our Synergy team completed projects to enhance the retention and promotion of women, we partnered with organizations prioritizing recruitment of more racially and ethnically diverse candidates, and we developed education and training around unconscious bias. We are also focused on a deeper understanding of our diversity data and metrics with the help of our Digital Solutions team. Our programs continue to evolve and mature, to support the Elevate global community, our partners, and our customers.

We honor human rights, civil rights and civil liberties, and the rule of law

We respect and stand up for human rights,² civil rights and civil liberties,³ and the rule of law. We conduct business in many countries, jurisdictions, and cultures around the world. Our diversity brings different (sometimes conflicting) experiences, beliefs, points of view, and legal systems to Elevate, which we navigate, respectfully, albeit sometimes imperfectly.

We welcome all voices to the conversation

This year we formed a task force to explore the role of our company, management, and employees in expressing views and opinions on geopolitical and social issues. Rather than assign speaking rights to the CEO alone, we resolved to develop a path for our broader leadership team to respectfully express themselves on issues that are important to them, honoring their personal point of view. This will allow the many voices at Elevate to be part of the conversation.

As a part of our commitment to ensuring that people’s voices are heard, we consulted our global community on what our Elevate principles should be – our values in action. We conducted focus groups with hundreds of our colleagues to discuss what’s important to them and heard their diverse points of view. What do we stand for? What behaviors do we encourage and expect from ourselves and our colleagues? How can we ensure that our work and our company are positive influences on our lives and the lives of others?

This year has taught us all the importance of listening and of being heard. Our principles roadshow, conducted in person and virtually, aimed to accomplish exactly that. These principles, created by our community, for our community, represent our commitment to be the best we can be… for each other and the greater good. We celebrate and value differences in views and perspectives and are often reminded that honoring human difference makes a positive impact on our business.

The process we followed to prepare this report

The research, analysis and development of this Equitability and Inclusion Report was led by our Global Head of Synergy, Jacquie Champagne, and our Director of Engagement, Courtney Little, working with a team of senior Elevate executives comprised of our Chairman and CEO, Liam Brown, our President and Executive Sponsor of Synergy, John Croft, and our VP of People, Joyce Thorne.

In 2020, we continued our global review of gender pay parity. We assessed each role and found that we are generally paying women and men equal salaries for the same role, based on qualifiers such as location, education, experience, skills, certifications, and other factors. We defined specific job qualifiers to assist us in keeping gender pay parity on track globally.

Also included in this report are the results from Synergy’s second anonymous Equitability and Inclusion Questionnaire. This survey allows our people to self-identify against a broader set of demographics, including religion, non-binary gender identification, disability, sexual orientation, and veteran status, information not held in our HR database. With a deeper dive into our organizational makeup, we learned, for example, that our people practice more than eight religions or philosophical beliefs and that 4% have had or currently have a disability.

As part of our survey, we include questions to understand how included our people feel at Elevate. This is an important metric to measure the effectiveness of our equitability and inclusion efforts. Responses to these questions serve to inform opportunities to improve. It’s critical that our people feel their perspectives and opinions are valued and appreciated. We care.

The Report

The information in our Equitability and Inclusion Report is a combination of the demographics in our HRIS, the expanded data from our Equitability and Inclusion Questionnaire, and the findings from our global salary reviews. 

Global Compensation Comparison

  • Women 100% 100%
  • Men 90% 90%

Overall men and women are paid equally for similar roles. Globally women are paid +10% more than men.

This represents our unadjusted global gender pay gap analysis. The unadjusted gender pay gap is the average difference between the remuneration for men and women.



The average age of our people globally.

  • Not Specified 3.5% 3.5%
  • 20–29 19.9% 19.9%
  • 30–39 54.4% 54.4%
  • 40–49 17.0% 17.0%
  • 50–59 6.9% 6.9%
  • 60+ 2.3% 2.3%

Gender – In Leadership

The review of gender diversity across the leadership teams at the end of 2020 indicates that we made progress in some areas from 2019. We have greater representation of women on the Executive Leadership Team and the Global Leadership Team, and we will continue our efforts to increase the number of women in leadership roles.


  • Women 40% 40%
  • Men 60% 60%

In 2020, our Board consisted of 40% women, a 7% increase since 2019.

Executive Leadership Team 

  • Women 41% 41%
  • Men 59% 59%

The share of women members of our Executive Leadership team is 1% higher than previous year.

Global Leadership Team

  • Women 38% 38%
  • Men 62% 62%

The share of women members of our Global Leadership Team is 1% greater at 38%.

Gender – Global and Regional


  • Women 46% 46%
  • Men 54% 54%

In 2020 the share of women in all roles across Elevate globally increased +1%.


  • Women 57% 57%
  • Men 43% 43%

Women make up 57% of our Europe/UK community.


  • Women 58% 58%
  • Men 42% 42%

Women make up 58% of our US community.


  • Women 59% 59%
  • Men 41% 41%

The share of women in the Philippines increased 1% to 59%.


  • Women 34% 34%
  • Men 66% 66%

The share of women in India remained constant at 34% from 2019 to 2020.

APAC – Other

  • Women 48% 48%
  • Men 52% 52%

In all other regions in which Elevate operates globally, representation of women is at 48%.

Tech v Non-Tech


  • Women 24% 24%
  • Men 76% 76%


  • Women 50% 50%
  • Men 50% 50%

The share of women in technology-related roles globally grew for the second year running to 24% an increase of 2%.

Race and Ethnicity

As race and ethnicity is largely defined by region, the categories below are primarily from a Western perspective. Asian as an ethnicity represents a large part of our global community that resides in India and the Philippines.


  • Asian 65% 65%
  • Black or African American 2% 2%
  • Caucasian 29% 29%
  • Hispanic or LatinX 2% 2%
  • Two or more races 1% 1%
  • Not Specified 2% 2%

Under-represented populations increased by 1% to make up 5% of Elevate’s global community.

US and UK

  • Asian 12% 12%
  • Black or African American 4% 4%
  • Caucasian 73% 73%
  • Hispanic or LatinX 6% 6%
  • Two or more races 2% 2%
  • Not Specified 2% 2%

In the US and UK, Elevate’s community consists of 12% under-represented populations.

Executive Leadership Team

  • Asian 35% 35%
  • Caucasian 65% 65%

Our Executive Leadership team consists of 35% Asian individuals.

Global Leadership Team

  • Asian 29% 29%
  • Black or African American 1% 1%
  • Caucasian 69% 69%
  • Hispanic or LatinX 3% 3%
  • Others 6% 6%

Elevate’s Global Leadership Team consists of 10% under-represented minorities.

Elevate Priorities

In 2021, we will prioritize the recruitment, promotion, and retention of under-represented populations and will engage our global talent teams and executive management to drive improvement. 

Self-Identified Demographics

The below demographics were gathered through an anonymous Equitability and Inclusion Questionnaire supported by Synergy. More than 66% of our people voluntarily provided personal information to help Synergy understand our global community’s makeup.

Gender Identity

  • Men 51.6% 51.6%
  • Women 46.5% 46.5%
  • Non-binary 0.1% 0.1%
  • Not specified 1.8% 1.8%

Sexual Orientation

  • Heterosexual 90.9% 90.9%
  • Gay or Lesbian 2.1% 2.1%
  • Bisexual 1.6% 1.6%
  • Other 0.4% 0.4%
  • Not specified 5.0% 5.0%

Trans Identity

  • Cisgender 98.0% 98.0%
  • Transgender 0.1% 0.1%
  • Not specified 1.8% 1.8%

Disability Identification

  • None 91.6% 91.6%
  • Have a disability (or previously had) 3.7% 3.7%
  • Not specified 4.7% 4.7%


  • Christian 21.7% 21.7%
  • Hindu 37.3% 37.3%
  • Jewish 1.3% 1.3%
  • Sikh 4.8% 4.8%
  • Buddhist 0.4% 0.4%

(Religion, continued)

  • Muslim 3.6% 3.6%
  • Mormon 0.7% 0.7%
  • Jain 1.1% 1.1%
  • No Religious Belief 18.1% 18.1%
  • Not Specified 11.1% 11.1%

Belonging and inclusion

Once again, in 2020, we incorporated questions related to inclusion into our Equitability and Inclusion Questionnaire. We created a composite ‘Inclusion Score’ based on the following questions:

At Elevate:

  • I feel I belong.
  • Perspectives like mine are included in decision-making.
  • The Company cares about me.
  • I can voice a contrary opinion without fear of negative consequences.

In 2020, as measured against the 2019 composite Inclusion Score, there was a 20% increase in respondents who indicated they feel included at Elevate. Additionally, over 70% of all respondents agreed or strongly agreed with each of the above measures of belonging and inclusion.

Our commitment to equitability and inclusion

Input from our people provides rich information about our community as a whole, our diversity, and specific focus areas to focus on for improvement. The below highlights the efforts we took in 2020 and the actions we plan to take in 2021. from our people provides rich information about our community as a whole, our diversity, and specific areas to focus on for improvement. The below highlights the efforts we took in 2020 and the actions we plan to take in 2021.

Partner with organizations to increase hiring of racially and ethnically diverse candidates. In 2020, we attended (virtual) career fairs and cultivated deeper relationships with organizations to create internship opportunities for undergraduate and law school students from various backgrounds. In 2021, we will participate in events with partner organizations and educational institutions with a diverse student population. One of our partners is primarily comprised of first-generation LatinX and Black/African-American graduates. We will look to hire for our internship program and for Elevate positions from these programs.

Support women’s initiatives in Elevate India. In 2020, the Synergy team focused on inclusion of women in the workplace. We enhanced sexual harassment training to include our vendors and work-from-home scenarios due to COVID-19. We initiated a mentorship program for women and held virtual panels dealing with the challenges working women and mothers face, given their greater responsibility to care for children and maintain the household. Focus groups also discussed mothers returning to work after maternity leave and strategies to adapt to changing environments effectively. These open discussions were well received by both women and men at Elevate in India. In 2021, we will continue to focus on empowering women in the workplace by expanding our mentorship program and increasing our efforts to attract and hire women.

Enhance the diversity of our leadership teams. In 2020, women comprised 40% of our Board. Our Global Leadership Team increased representation of women by 1%. In 2021, our recruitment team will work with business unit leaders to increase efforts to recruit from diverse populations across Elevate. We will also launch a leadership development program, which consists of representation with diverse representation (58% women, 47% Asian, 5% Black/African-American, 5% LGBTQ+).

Hold unconscious bias and cross-cultural awareness training. In 2020, we updated new training to combat unconscious bias and improve cross-cultural awareness and its effects in the workplace. Our Synergy team produced an online module, which will be rolled out as a part of Elevate’s professional development training in 2021. The team also created training aimed at recruiters and hiring managers to highlight and minimize the negative impacts of unconscious bias in the recruitment, hiring, and promotion process. In 2021, we will continue to enhance this training and will hold quarterly sessions to develop greater awareness around conscious inclusion across Elevate.

Develop a health and wellness program. In 2020, we created a framework to support a health and wellness initiative at Elevate. We launched a company-wide survey to gather feedback from our global community about what mattered most, and we invited members of our leadership team to share their personal stories related to mental health challenges. In 2021, we will launch RISE (Recognize, Include, Support, Educate) to keep the conversation alive, increase awareness, and help reduce the stigma around mental health issues. We will develop quarterly wellness initiatives, invite experts to speak, and will continue to weave the personal stories of our leadership and team members into our meetings and communications.

Create an emotional intelligence training program. In 2021, our Synergy team will design and implement workshops focused on increasing emotional intelligence. We will pilot this with our colleagues in the Philippines, who will receive training to enhance interpersonal skills and self-awareness. There will be specific courses for team leaders and managers, focusing on managing employee and customer expectations while effectively coping and maintaining one’s perspective during challenging times.

Future analysis

We will continue to use our Equitability Dashboard to power future analysis, which provides a real-time snapshot of how we are doing against our goals and flag areas for immediate review and action. We will also engage Elevate’s Digital Solutions team to analyze our diversity and inclusion data to create a roadmap for change to improve business outcomes. We release a report each year to transparently show where we are on our journey and what we are doing to keep the conversation about equitability and inclusion alive and part of everyday business at Elevate.



Executive Leadership Team: Direct reports to the CEO who lead our business units, geographies, and corporate functions.
Global Leadership Team: Directors and above who make up the top 10% in terms of their responsibilities and decision rights.
Technology or technical roles include: Engineering, analytics/data science, product design, technical product managers, IT, and software QA.
Under-represented minorities include: Black or African American; LatinX; American Indian or Alaska Native; Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander; and Two or More Races.


¹ https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2020/06/09/hispanic-women-immigrants-young-adults-those-with-less-education-hit-hardest-by-covid-19-joblosses/
² For example, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is an international document adopted by the United Nations General Assembly that enshrines the rights and freedoms of all human beings: https://www.un.org/en/universal-declaration-human-rights/index.html/ 
³ “Civil rights” and “civil liberties” are often used interchangeably, but the terms have distinct meanings. Civil liberties are freedoms to protect us from tyranny (think: our freedom of speech), while civil rights are the legal rights that protect individuals from discrimination (think: employment discrimination).

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